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Movement of ideas

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Lancaster University

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Movement of ideas

The movement of ‘ideas for practice’ to literacy teachers in lockdown

This project is investigating how primary teachers have accessed and exchanged ideas about literacy teaching through the COVID-19 pandemic. During this time teachers have had to develop new teaching strategies and resources to support learners in ways that are motivating, possible within the home and accessible to children and their families. This process has been eased by opportunities to network with other professionals using social media and videoconferencing as well as access to online resources. Navigating such resources however is challenging given the proliferation of available materials from diverse professional, government and commercial organisations. National and local lockdowns may therefore exacerbate an already complex landscape for professional learning.

The project explores the ‘ideas for practice’ in literacy teaching that are gaining traction in the current crisis, and how these ideas move. We use ‘ideas for practice’ to refer to a broad range of inspiration and guidance. We are interested in: the literacy topics that surface (e.g. spelling, critical reading); the form support takes (e.g. tips, lesson plans, resources for children); and the assumptions about literacy that underpin the focus topic and/or recommended approaches. We will:

  1. Track and analyse how ideas about practice in literacy move to teachers, with a focus on social media.
  2. Describe what happens to ideas as they move, e.g. (How) do meanings change when synthesised in blogs or summarised in tweets?
  3. Identify the topics, forms and assumptions about literacy that seem to be gaining traction.
  4. Identify how/whether such ideas build on research.

This project is funded by Sheffield Hallam University’s Interdisciplinary Research And Innovation In Response To The Covid-19 Pandemic Fund. Research is conducted by Professor Cathy Burnett, Professor Bronwen Maxwell and Dr Ian Guest, with Dr Julia Gillen of Lancaster University.

About this project

Explore the people, research centres and partner organisations behind this project.

Research partners

Lancaster University

Get in touch

Contact us to discuss facilities, partnerships, doctoral research and more

Email us

Research team

Cathy Burnett 119579

Professor Cathy Burnett

Professor of Literacy and Education

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Bronwen Maxwell 121106

Professor Bronwen Maxwell

Head of Commissioned Research

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